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New Finds – XXVII

This will be another rushed addition, but these rushed additions have been making it a good year for this series. The posts are written in a hurry, including fewer bands, possibly less information about each, and with the picks being selected with far less care, often after listening to only a handful of songs, or in a few cases even without listening to any except those I linked to, but at least I keep adding them. And the fact that I’m no longer checking those groups, or anything else for that matter, for other bands I don’t yet know means I’m not adding to the list, so the number of bands simply forgotten on it is dropping. The number of those included in such posts is only very slowly increasing, but going through the list to see which of the rest released something this year means that I’m at least learning that bit of information about many, and in a few cases I also learned about name changes while I was at it.

This time, I’ll start with Bendida, which is another band that released a full album this year, though again only back in March. Something I just noticed now is that, despite being Bulgarian, they seem to have a Romanian label, and they apparently also had a concert here to promote this album, but that doesn’t really matter, so I’ll move on to the pick from this recent album and go with Music of the Spheres. And since I actually took quite some time to select that one, I’ll get back to the easier method for the second pick, just looking at the few older videos they have and going with Land of Perun, which also includes male vocals and some harsher sounds but not growls or anything that really bothered me. They do have some songs with growls or sounds that are too harsh, however, and many sound rather unpolished and maybe also, for lack of a better term, uncertain, as if they weren’t quite sure what they wanted to do, but the potential is there and there are plenty of nice parts, and songs that are nice enough overall.

Another band that has an album released this year, this one back in February, is Ye Banished Privateers, and out of the few songs from it that are officially posted I’ll go with Elephants’ Dance as the first pick. As for the second, I’ll again reduce my options as much as I can and actually go with Annabel because I remember it and think it was actually how I first heard of them. It’s possible that both of these are exceptions, other songs that I happened to listen to, as far as I recall in the past as well, tending to be harsher, funny or both, and I didn’t care for the harsher ones while the funny ones tend to lose their appeal quickly, but these are nice enough, and I’d say particularly serious as well, and there are others like them. Not that the band’s sound or theme fit with what I add to these posts otherwise, or listen to in general, but they’re definitely good, I might even go as far as to say outstanding, at what they mean to do.

And the third band is FlowerLeaf, which just has one song that’s actually new, All My Life, released this year, so that must be my first pick. As for the second, I’ll go with Girl in Pearls. Some of the other songs seem to suffer more from a lack of polish and also that uncertainty that less experienced bands often struggle with, while on the other hand a couple are harsher, even including guest vocals for growls, but I quite like this second one, and a couple of others as well, actually spending some time to decide which of them to pick, so it’s another case of the potential clearly being there. And they also seem to want to make a point through the lyrics.

Written by Cavalary on August 29, 2020 at 8:25 PM in Music | 0 Comments

New Finds – XXVI

I had a quick post on an entirely different topic in mind for today, but that not only deserves but actually requires much more time and attention, not to mention skill, while I might just get away with it when it comes to another addition to this series. So I continued to search for bands on the list that released new material this year and it wasn’t long before I found quite a few more, including a few with full albums, albeit still released no later than in March. It’ll again be rushed, with the picks being selected just out of what I could see posted officially at a quick glance, making a point of restricting the potential options as much as possible since I couldn’t stay on-line and listen to more, but it’ll have to do for now.

The first band I’ll list here is Emerald Mind and, while they don’t have a full album released this year, they do have two singles, and out of them I guess I’ll go with We Are One as the first pick. As for the second, I wanted one from one of their full albums, in which case they’re saving me a lot of time, because the only such song on their YouTube channel is Astronaut in Her Space, though you can listen to everything on their Bandcamp if you want. It’s those two recent songs that really got my attention now though, the vocals in particular, which vocals I’d say are notable in this second pick as well, so I’m pretty content with it even after actually listening to more of their songs while writing the rest of this post. Not exactly keen on the composition, the overall sound, this bothering me more on the other songs I listened to than on these ones, but there is definitely potential here.

Crimson Sun did release a full album this year, albeit back in January, and I’d go with The Beast Within off it as the first pick, perhaps in part to avoid picking songs with the same name from two different bands included in this post. As for an earlier one, I’ll go with Awaken. Must say that it’s not a sound I’m exactly keen on, but it may well be a subjective matter and it bothers me less on these two songs than on the others, and there are good elements as well. They wouldn’t be here, or on the list at all, otherwise.

And the last band I’ll add here is Xtasy. They also released a full album this year, back in March, and while my memory may be wrong, I actually think I only stumbled upon them around that time, if not even more recently. Either way, my pick from that album would be Welcome to My World, while for an older song I’ll go with It Is You. This second pick is a ballad and unusual for them, at least out of what I listened to, though I guess the first one is softer as well, so they may not accurately represent the general sound of the band, which seems to be in the general area of classic rock, but I’m picking according to my preferences, after all. They strike me as a more established band than the other two in this post, more professional and confident, and the vocals are definitely right for the genre.

Written by Cavalary on August 23, 2020 at 3:13 PM in Music | 0 Comments

New Finds – XXV

It’s again because I need to throw something here as the week’s second post and want to avoid a pointless Sunday update, but at least I’m doing something that’s somewhat useful by adding another post to this series. It’s another rushed one, but again focuses on bands that released new material this year, same as the last one. It’s harder to decide just how many bands I should say are included in it, however, even if that may seem strange. As far as the list is concerned, there will be five, one of them only added to the list now, because I’m including it here, though it’s definitely not a new find and in fact should have no business being in such a post at all. But what makes it tricky is that the other four come in pairs, the two that are currently active being formed by the core members of the other two, after those split up, and one of these also had another stage, with another name, in between. Since that, shall we say, intermediate band only released covers, it was never actually on the list and I won’t include any of its songs here, but some may count it as having been mentioned, which means that, depending on how you look at it, this post may be said to include anything between three and six bands.

The band that wasn’t on the list so far, and which has no business whatsoever being in such a post at all, is Draconian. It’s old, clearly known by anyone with any interest in their genre, and said genre isn’t what I’m looking for. However, just last week they released Sorrow of Sophia, which is a song from the album scheduled to be released later this year, and I happened to listen to it and found myself keeping it on repeat for quite a while over the past few days, so it may be said that it’s what made me think that adding another such post may just be the thing to do in order to have a second one this week. The second, much older, pick is without a doubt Death, Come Near Me, which is a song I do occasionally return to, maybe even having it on repeat for hours when that happens. There are growls in these two songs as well, but for some reason they appeal to me, while pretty much everything else released by them that I tried listening to chases me away, the other songs that I even managed to listen to all the way to the end without wincing and needing to force myself to put up with it just to be able to say I gave them every chance being counted on the fingers of one hand. Still, for those whose preferences differ from mine in this manner, there’s some new material coming.

Next comes a band I kept meaning to add to such a post, but wasn’t quite sure how to go about it. Their current name is Alexandrite and the first EP under this name was actually released earlier this year, even if all four songs were in fact posted last year. However, it’s formed by the core members of Revontulet, which was apparently active for a decade but only released one album during that period, at a time when the two of them seem to have already been the only remaining permanent members. Complicating things even further, there was a relatively brief intermediate period, between Revontulet and Alexandrite, under the name of Rainheart Symphony, which released only covers. So I’ll skip over that period, but pick two songs by Alexandrite, Enough and Find the Light, and two by Revontulet, Rainheart, and The Pianist of the Darkest Night. Admittedly, can’t say I was the one who picked these last two, since they’re the only two that are posted officially, not counting any live recordings, but they are definitely good, as are all those released as Alexandrite. I’d say I’m expecting great things from them, but that will likely require finding some stability, in order to be able to focus on the music, so I hope that will happen.

As for the last pair, I’m adding it because I kept going through the list, searching for other bands with something released this year, and found that Beneath My Sins released an album. But Beneath My Sins was formed by the members of Evolvent after that band split up, and that may well be the reason why I placed it where I did in this version of the list that’s ordered differently. Not that I’m thrilled by either, but after listening to the three Evolvent songs and six Beneath My Sins songs posted officially, I must say that the former sound clearly better than the latter. Being the only one of those three from a full album, Love Doesn’t Love Me must be one of the picks from Evolvent, and it actually sounds pretty nice despite the growls, which are at least rather subdued, while the other will be Spiritual Confession. On the other hand, if I’m to pick What You Feel from that recent Beneath My Sins album, it’s pretty much just because I can listen to it, not because I actually recommend it. I tend to wince at their vocals in general, and plenty of the songs have growls that chase me away, the second pick, From the Flames, being the only one of the six that sounds somewhat better, and it’s probably the reason why I ended up adding them on the list at all, back when I did.

Written by Cavalary on July 26, 2020 at 11:00 PM in Music | 0 Comments

New Finds – XXIV

I need to rush this week’s second post today, and in order to avoid a Sunday update, especially since I’ll have more to add in personal posts after tomorrow, I’m going to try another rushed post in this series. Not that I checked anything since the previous one, so there are no actual new finds, but I looked over the bands that are towards the top of the version of the list that I have in a file and which haven’t been added to such a post so far, looking for those that released something this year. Somewhat surprisingly, I didn’t have to go through too many before finding three, so I can put together this post, albeit once again doing it in a hurry. Admittedly, only one of the three released a full album, and that was back in February, the other two just releasing a new single, but doing so just this month, which should be good enough, especially considering the current circumstances.

To start with the band that released a full album this year, that’s Diabulus in Musica. I’ve known of them for several years, but was never certain whether I wanted to include them in such a post or not, because they have good, at times even great, female vocals, choir parts and choruses, but other parts of their sound can put me off, and that’s even before getting to the fact that some songs have growls. That sent me away each time I wanted to try listening to a full album, so I couldn’t even say how many of their songs are like that, but I do know that there are at least some that aren’t, and I’m obviously only picking out of those. And, since I’m in a hurry, I obviously didn’t try to listen to full albums now either, so I’m only picking out of the songs without growls that are posted officially, meaning that there may well be way better ones available, but also that these may be the odd ones out and most or even all the others have growls; I just don’t know. That said, out of those from that recent album that are officially posted, I have to go with One Step Higher. Not that I like it too much, considering those harsh instrumental parts that sound as if they’d lead to growls but actually don’t, but the other two are quite clearly out of the question. There are some better options when it comes to older songs, however, and out of those I’ll go with Inner Force, though this again is only out of the few which are posted officially.

Next, one of the bands which just released a new song this month is Hamka, that song being Suffering Ages. I’m sure I ended up adding this band to the list, and possibly even actually tracking it down instead of simply happening to stumble upon it, because Elisa C. Martin is their vocalist and her voice struck me as distinctive ever since I heard it on a Dark Moor album that was among the first ones downloaded back when I started getting into the genre, so maybe once every few years, possibly after hearing one of those songs again at a time when I’m actually paying attention, I may find myself searching for any other bands or projects she worked or is working with. That said, Hamka’s sound could be way better, and she also sounded better while working with other bands in the past, for which reason I also tried to quickly listen at least to parts of most of the songs from their first full album in order to search for a second pick, but in the end I stuck with my original choice, Earth’s Call, which I had initially picked out of the few from their last one which have been posted on their channels. That choice was at first made in good part because of what it’s about, but now that I compared to some of the others as well, it strikes me as one of their best songs in terms of sound as well.

If I sounded less than impressed with the two bands listed above, that will change now, the second band I’m adding because it released a new song this month being Karnataka. That song is Forever, which gives me the obvious first pick. It has a beginning that instantly reminded me of something I struggled with for half a day before finally identifying as A Final Dream, which also led to finally finding out who actually sings that, and then a later part reminded me, also instantly and this time without any need to struggle to identify the song, of If We Hold on Together. But, leaving that aside, it’s a nice song on its own. Selecting a second one is harder though, what makes it even worse being that they don’t exactly have anything posted officially and therefore didn’t offer me the same method to limit the options as the others. I could just listen to one album though, since it seems to be the full one that they’ve been promoting more actively, and I must say that it’s just amazing. I have no idea whether the others are also this good at the moment, but when it comes to this one, I listened to all of it and was blown away, so I must state that this really is a band that belongs in such a post, and one that I truly recommend. Still, if I’m to stick to my usual rule and pick a second song, I’ll go with Poison Ivy, in part also because of the message.

Written by Cavalary on July 19, 2020 at 7:41 PM in Music | 0 Comments

New Finds – XXIII

Recently, I finally created a section on the site for the list of bands and artists, so it won’t just be a pretty much hidden page anymore, but I haven’t done anything else with it. Worse, haven’t been checking that Power of Female Fronted Metal group for the past six months, the situation with my Internet access being what it is and going through potential new finds and possibly adding them to the list taking quite a lot of time, so I have a single new find during this entire period, as a result of an ad on YouTube that I actually listened to and found interesting. Still, even if mainly to avoid a fifth personal post in a row, I want to add another post to this series now. It’ll be another short one, with just three entries, and at the time I’m starting to write it I don’t even have any idea what the third will be, while the second will be anything but a new find, for me or, most probably, nearly everyone else with any interest in the genre. But I’ve been meaning to add it to such a post for a while, ever since I found out, several months after the fact, that they released a new album, and I’ve done this before, with Xandria, for the same reason.

That sole actual new find during this entire period is Moran Magal, so a singer-songwriter, but there are of course other people involved, to play the instruments used, with the exception of piano and keyboards. Something of a mixed bag overall, I’d say switching between a few different genres as well, some of which I’m not exactly fond of, but enjoyed some of the songs a fair bit. That obviously includes the song that made me discover her, Always Something, from her most recent album, which also seems to be her only full, proper one so far, so I’ll go with that as my first pick. As for the second, I listened to her first EP too, and I’ll go with Feel Again. But you can listen to pretty much everything yourself if you’re interested.

Next, the band too well-known to even put on the list would be Visions of Atlantis. I’ve known them for well over a decade, possibly closer to 15 years, but found myself quite impressed with the album they released last year, after only learning about it relatively recently. My expectations had definitely increased after their previous album, and for this reason I wouldn’t say I was completely blown away by this one, and there are a few weaker songs as well, but it is nevertheless quite impressive. It’s not easy to pick one song from it, so I’ll just pick out of the few they also have videos for, going with Nothing Lasts Forever for the moment. I’ll go way back for the second pick though, maybe as a way to show how they evolved since then. Not that this is easy, as there are a few others I’d have wanted to add here as well, earlier ones showing even more of an evolution, but I’ll stick to my usual rule and go with Seven Seas, since I remember how stuck I was on this for quite a long time back then, and I’m sure that this was the exact link I excitedly sent a few people at the time.

As for the third entry in this post, since I started with a singer, not a band, I’ll end with one as well, and that’s Eurielle. She’s also clearly quite well-known by now, but perhaps to a somewhat different crowd, and maybe it’s not exactly what you’d expect to see in such a post. Then again, in other ways, perhaps it is. Either way, a lovely voice and songs that just carry you away with them. Again, it’d be hard to pick if I’d go through everything, so I’m again making it much easier for myself and sticking just to those she has proper videos for, and I’ll exclude the collaborations as well, which leaves me with As the Skies Cascade as a clear pick out of the recent releases. As for something older, that’s harder, and I may well choose another if you’d ask me again, but at the moment I’ll go with Hate Me. But do listen to more yourself, maybe with your eyes closed and, I’ll say it again, allowing yourself to be carried away, maybe in a soothing daydream. Highly recommended, perhaps even more so in times like these.

Written by Cavalary on July 4, 2020 at 10:12 PM in Music | 0 Comments